End of year speech
Sam Wilson spoke at a school prizegiving. Here’s what she said.
(Tammy Gardner)
Hi everyone. I haven’t been in this hall for many, many years... it feels kinda freaky. But nice.

Now I have never given a speech to boys your age before. Well, other than my own sons, who are 7 and 9 years old. So I asked them what I should talk about.

My nine-year-old Josef told me to warn you all against fake Yu-Gi-Oh cards, to make sure you are all playing fantasy football on the computer and to find out how many of you have the really good Indiana Jones and Star Wars Lego.

Benj, who is 7 told me to talk about farting. If he and his friends could listen to someone talking about farting all day long, they would.

I didn’t think that was such a good idea, though... if I did, I don’t think Mrs Scholtz would be very happy with me.

I thought his second suggestion rocked though. He told me that grown ups always go on and on and on and on... and he warned me not to do that.

Good advice, don’t you think? I agree with Benjy actually. I always find it really fantastic when someone speaks for a much shorter time than I was expecting them too, especially when I am in a crowded hall.

So I am only really going to say two things. One is a yay thing, and the other is a fun holiday project suggestion.

First, I want to say: Yay you! Actually, I’d like us all to say that... Parents can you shout out Yay you, and kids can you should out yay me. I am going to count to three... and I’d really like it if you make a lot of noise. Ready? 1,2,3... yay you!

You’ve spent another whole year in school. Yay you.

You’ve  whined and cajoled and got your parents to get your here on time every morning, Yay you.

You’ve concentrated when you thought you were too tired to. Yay you.

You’ve enjoyed bits you weren’t expecting to enjoy, you’ve conquered things you didn’t think you could conquer. Yay, you.

You’ve played harder, laughed louder and learnt more than you did last year. Yay you.

And those are not not small achievements. Yay each and every one of you. I am very excited to hand over your certificates.

That’s the one thing. The other thing I’d like to do is to suggest a Holiday Plan. I want you to get your family around a table and I want you to get a clean sheet of paper and a pencil and write on the top of it: ‘Summer isn’t over until...”

And then I want you to make a list.

And then I want each member of your family to suggest three things to go the list. They might not all be able to stay on the list – my Benj put down go to Disneyland, and that’s SO not going to happen – only stuff that’s possible can go on the list.

We made our summer holiday to do list last week – and I’ll give you some examples.

My husband Andreas wants to go to camping and to the MTN Science Centre.

Josef wants to spend an entire day watching all the Star Trek movies, while eating all the butter salted popcorn he can eat.

I want to spend at least one whole day under an umbrella at the beach, and another whole day reading bad chick lit in bed. I also want to go boogie boarding.

Benjy wants to catch tadpoles in Newlands Forest, and then bring them home and see if we can breed them into frogs in the sink. He also wants to eat chocolate while on a boat.

Why am I telling you all this. Because, yay you... the year is almost, almost over. And summer is about family and being a kid or reconnecting with your essential kidness. But life is busy, and time is scarce and it is too easy to get stuck doing routine stuff you don’t really care about and miss out on the good stuff.

So make a list. And stick it on your fridge. And have the summer you deserve.

Congratulations, boys.


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